How the COVID-19 Pandemic Impacted the 2020 ACS 1-year PUMS Data

By Danika Brockman and Megan Schouweiler

One of the highlights of the past IPUMS USA release was the 2020 ACS 1-year Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS) file. Due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on 2020 ACS data collection and data quality, the Census Bureau did not release the standard PUMS data. Instead, they released the 2020 ACS 1-year data with experimental weights designed to account for the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on data quality. In this blog post, we discuss the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the 2020 ACS and the development of the experimental weights, and we provide some recommendations for using the 2020 ACS 1-year PUMS file.

Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic on Data Collection and Data Quality and the Development of the Experimental Weights

The COVID-19 pandemic severely disrupted data collection for the 2020 ACS. All methods of data collection were either shut down or significantly reduced from March 2020 through the end of the year. Data collection for group quarters was particularly disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic; in-person visits to group quarter facilities were suspended or greatly reduced from March 2020 through the end of the year, and telephone interviews were not conducted due to logistical constraints. Beyond the impacts to data collection methods, the 2020 ACS had significant variability across the 2020 data collection year in response rates for both housing units and group quarters, and had the lowest overall response rate in the history of the ACS1.

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IPUMS PMA Longitudinal Data

By Devon Kristiansen

When Performance Monitoring for Action (PMA) initiated data collection in 2013, the survey design was a high-frequency, cross-sectional series with a focus on family planning, water, and sanitation indicators. Beginning in 2019, PMA refocused on reproductive and sexual health, and adjusted the survey design to add a contraceptive calendar and a longitudinal panel of women of childbearing age to observe contraceptive and fertility dynamics.

In order help researchers leverage the rich data from the redesigned PMA, IPUMS PMA has updated its online data dissemination system to provide longitudinal data in long form or wide form, delivering data files that link the women’s panel records.

The longitudinal data are designed to allow for analysis of contraceptive uptake, discontinuation, and method switching, as well as changes in fertility intentions and actualization over time. However, the redesigned survey also includes many new questions, including questions about domestic violence, women’s economic empowerment, abortion, health care access during COVID-19, and many other topics.

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Reproductive Calendar Data Now Available from IPUMS DHS

By Miriam L. King

IPUMS DHS has released data for a new unit of analysis, woman-months, based on retrospective calendar data offering a month-to-month history of a woman’s reproductive events during the preceding five years.

Woman Months: Each record will be a woman-month from respective calendar data.

The calendar data document for every month whether a woman gave birth, was pregnant, or terminated a pregnancy. For most samples, the monthly record also indicates whether the woman used a (specified) contraceptive method and her the reason for stopping use of the method. Some samples also collect information on the woman’s union status, employment, and the type of pregnancy termination.

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